I know I always say everything in moderation and to follow the 80:20 rule (eat healthy 80% of the time and treat yourself 20% of the time). Alcohol falls into this category too. You should have alcohol in moderation. Apparently moderation for females is 1 drink per day (2 per day for males). BUT not drinking Sunday – Friday and saving it all up and having 7 drinks on a Saturday does not count.
Anyway, we already know that alcohol is bad for your health, the side effects that happen when you drink too much, and effects of long-term abuse. So I’m going to talk about how bad it is for you in terms of health and weight loss.
1. Calories In Alcohol
The calories in alcohol are empty (meaning there are no nutrients), and alcohol contains nearly twice as many calories as protein and carbs per gram. Here’s a rough estimate as to how many calories are in a few different types of alcoholic drinks. Each drink will vary, so this is just a rough guide.
- Wine – 125 calories
- Light beer – 110 calories
- Shot of vodka – 96 calories
- Shot of whisky / scotch – 105 calories
- Vodka lime soda – 96 calories
- Cosmopolitan – 211 calories
- Sangria – 175 calories
- Margarita – 254 calories
I’m sure you get the idea there! Wine and straight spirits have the least amount of calories. Anything that involves a mixer that isn’t soda water, will also increase the calorie and sugar intake.
2. Your Body Burns Alcohol Before Food
Unfortunately, any food that you eat when drinking or afterwards, will most likely be stored as fat. Your body will burn off the alcohol first, and if you’ve had more than 2 drinks, it is highly unlikely that you will burn off all the alcohol before the night is up. Alcohol also increases your appetite so you will want to eat, and you will probably make very poor food choices in a drunken state. Be aware that any nights out will set you back in terms of weight loss (if that is your goal).
3. How It Leads To Weight Gain
Whenever you’re trying to lose weight / fat, there are 3 key things you need to manage: diet, exercise and sleep. Drinking causes you to consume excess calories, decreases your motivation to exercise (especially if you’re hungover) and also disturbs your sleep. So on most occasions, alcohol will cause weight gain or prevent weight loss. To make sure this doesn’t happen, drink in moderation! Remember, that’s 1 standard drink per day for females. Of course, less is better :)